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Windows and tabs
Keyboard shortcuts
Hints for working with the Terminal
Bash customization


~/config/settings/profile - aggiunge/sostituisce le opzioni specificate in /boot/system/settings/etc/profile
~/config/settings/inputrc - aggiunge/sostituisce le opzioni specificate in /boot/system/settings/etc/inputrc

Il Terminale è l'interfaccia di Haiku alla riga di comando bash, ovvero la Bourne Again Shell.

Please refer to the topic on Scripting for a few links to online tutorials on working in the shell and also have a look at Haiku's commandline applications. Here, we'll concentrate on the Terminal application itself.

index Finestre e tab

You can open as many Terminals as needed, either each in its own window by simply launching more Terminals or with ALT N from an already running Terminal. Or you use Terminal's tabbed view and open more tabs with ALT T.


Double-clicking into the emtpy part of the tab bar opens a new tab; onto a tab opens a dialog to rename its title. There are several %-designated variables that are explained with a tooltip when you hover the mouse over the text field.
By default, %1d: %p, a tab shows the current directory and, separated by a :, the name of the currently running process (or -- if it's just bash running, probably idling). The screenshot above shows the first tab with a FTP session in the Desktop folder and a second tab idling at home.
Via Settings | Window title… the Terminal window's title can be edited in a similar way.

Right-clicking a tab shows a context menu to Close tab, Close other tabs or, like double-clicking, Edit tab title…

A Terminal window can be resized like any other window or you use the presets from the Settings | Window size menu. ALT ENTER toggles fullscreen mode.

All the settings you change directly through the Settings menu, like Window title, Window size, Text encoding or Font size are only kept for the current session. If you want to make permanent changes, you have to either invoke Save as default or apply them in the Settings… panel.

index Settings

Settings | Settings… opens a panel to configure the standard settings of a Terminal.


Most of the offered settings speak for themselves. Not entirely obvious though, the font size is set in the submenu of the Font popup menu.
Hover your mouse over the "formulas" for naming tab and window titles to get tooltips for the available variables.

A few more options follow: you can have a Blinking cursor and choose to Allow bold text.
Use left Option as Meta key if you work with certain UNIX software that relies on accessing an extended portion of the ASCII character set, like e.g. GNU Emacs and the GNU readline library.
Activate the checkbox to Confirm exit if active programs exist and you'll be warned when trying to close a Terminal window while an app is still being executed.

Save to file… let's you save different settings as separate profiles, which on double-click open an accordingly configured Terminal.
Ripristina brings back the settings that were active when you opened the settings panel.
Predefiniti ripristina tutto ai valori predefiniti

index Colors

Settings | Colors… opens a panel to configure the colors used by Terminal.


From the top menu, you can choose a pre-defined Color scheme like Midnight or Retro or create a Custom one by selecting the color you want to change (Text, Background, Cursor etc.) and then use the color picker below.

You can also configure "ANSI colors", which are the first 8 named colors in the color palette of terminal applications. You choose a color, for example "ANSI red color", and then adjust it with the color picker below. The effect is visible live in the open Terminal and in the preview below. The exact colors used in various places are documented at Wikipedia.

Save to file… let's you save your custom color scheme under a name that will appear in the Color scheme menu at the top, if you put it in the default location ~/config/settings/Terminal/Theme.
Ripristina brings back the colors that were active when you opened the colors panel.
Predefiniti ripristina tutto ai valori predefiniti

index Scorcitoie da tastiera

You'll find a list of useful shortcuts in Shortcuts and key combinations.

Another nice feature that is more a key & mouse combination: When holding ALT a path or URL under the mouse pointer gets highlighted. A left-click opens the file/folder or website. A right-click opens a context menu to either Copy path or Copy absolute path. Imagine you're in /MyData/source/haiku/ and have the path generated/objects/haiku/x86_gcc2/release/apps/stylededit/StyledEdit under the mouse pointer, the latter menu item will result in the combined, absolute path <deep breath>:

If you hold down ALT SHIFT, only the path from beginning to where your mouse pointer sits will be highlighted.

By the way, right-clicking into the Terminal window will insert the clipboard. In combination with copying parts of highlighted paths, this can be used for speedy navigation of deep folder hierarchies.

index Hints for working with the Terminal

index Personalizzazione della Bash

Coming from Unix, there are countless possibilities to customize the bash itself. There are two files that are especially important to the user: profile and inputrc
Both files can be created in the /boot/home/config/settings/ folder and add or override the system defaults that are defined in /boot/system/settings/etc/.


The profile is loaded every time you open a new Terminal. It sets all kinds of aliases and variables that will affect bash's behavior and appearance. You'll find many online resources that will detail all possibilities.

The Haiku/BeOS Tip Server has quite a few tips to get you started, for example:

There are more, have a look.


The inputrc deals with keybindings. Since Haiku provides useful defaults, you probably don't have to mess with these more involved settings. If you do have special needs here, consult one of the many online resources, e.g. The GNU Readline Library.